A press conference was organized by BNPS for demanding specific allocation in the National Budget 2016-17 for proper implementation of National Plan of Action taken to implement the National Women Development Policy 2011 and quality education. Ms. Rokeya Kabir, the Executive Director of BNPS presided over the event held on 27 April 2016 in the VIP Lounge of the National Press Club. The key note paper was presented by Dr. Nazneen Ahmed, Senior Research Fellow of BIDS. Distinguished economist and Researcher Dr. Pratima Paul-Majumder and Dr. Sayma Haque Bidisha, Associate Professor, Department of Economics of the University of Dhaka delivered expert opinion on the issue. Mr. Mahfuzul Bari Chowdhury, Director of BNPS and Shahnaz Begum Sumi, Deputy Director of BNPS also delivered their speeches in the press conference. Representatives from civil society, different women and development organizations were present in the conference as special guests.
The speakers placed the demands in the press conference below:
Some news links of this event for interested readers Kalerkantho, Bhorerkagoj, Banglamail, Banglanews, though these are in Bangla.
- • Fifty percent people of the country are women, most of them have no ownership and control over resources, very low access to income options they are mostly powerless and dependent on others. Resource flow should be increased to them effectively and fairly.
- • The progress of the implementation of the National Plan of Action 2013 is yet to be published by the Ministry of Women and Children Affairs. Without proper monitoring the action plan will remain as paper-based report only. The information of progress should be updated regularly on the website of the Ministry.
- • A demand was placed in the press conference to include a report on compliance with the National Plan of Action for the Women Development Policy during planning and monitoring of allocation for women, in the upcoming gender budget. People should also know who are the focal points in different ministries in implementing the plan of action. The budget allocation for women development must follow the plan of action and that should be reflected in the gender budget report.
- • The Ministry of Women and Children Affairs should be made full-fledged ministry immediately. A set of gender sensitive skilled workforce should be deployed under this ministry from national to upazila level, who will work to fulfill the targets of the women development policy. The full institutional mechanism to implement the plan of action should be established, the skill and power circle of those is also required to be increased. Need-based trainings should be provided to the implementers of the women development policy for increasing gender sensitivity.
- • Gender focal points in all the ministries should be effective. Well-defined targets should be set up for every projects of each ministry. Proper steps for implementation and monitoring should be taken.
- • Budget allocation should be increased for including gender, sexual and reproductive health and rights in more sensitive and comprehensive way in the textbooks.
- • Special budget allocation is required to review of all teachers’ training curriculums including madrasah, training up teachers to end violence against women and girls, skill enhancement of teachers to provide counseling services and making them more gender sensitive.
- • On the background of increasing violence against women and girls budget allocation is required to increase self-defense skills of girl-students through skill camps in the schools and community.
- • Budget allocation for gender poverty mapping is needed to identify disadvantaged regions with respect to maternity and reproductive health services and set up mobile clinic for providing those services and standard birth control services.
- • Budget allocation for creating proper facilities for developed viscera and forensic examinations in the Upazila Health Complexes to reduce violence against women.